When you were a child, did you believe in magic? Did you dream of dancing lights in the palm of your hands? Did you yearn to soar the skies, free as a bird, or to swim among aquatic wonders? Perhaps you were the sort who wished to speak with animals or raise up flowers where you pleased? Then you grew up and learned that magic wasn't real. You went through life and had to just deal. You never found a new dream and didn't go looking. All your childhood, you only wanted magic and would do anything to have it, but it didn't exist. Or rather, for Erik Dara, it was an unreachable goal. So he left it behind and tried to become the sort of son his parents wouldn't have to worry about.
Before he knew it, he was nearly 30 and hadn't really done much with his life outside of the various jobs he had worked. He had saved up a decent amount of money and decided to take a break and go to college. He wanted to pick someplace far away as the apartment he lived in was still close to his parents', but now his lease was nearing expiration. It helped that he had no one tying him down and making him want to stay in his home city either. Not having a computer of his own, he went to his library to use theirs. As he was walking in, he bumped into the pamphlet stand just inside the doorway and knocked a few down. Scrambling, he put what fell back...except for one. It was an old, partially faded college pamphlet. He showed it to the librarian, but they didn't recognize it as they just re-organized the stand that morning.
Erik decided to give it a read through at the computer he sat at. The first thing he noticed was that it was more faded on the inside, but there were pictures of what appeared to be cats, each one black; various hats that all had pointed tips, and...sticks about the length of ones forearm. Erik felt the urge to throw it away, it was for a magic college. This had to be a hoax, a scam of some sort. There was no way a college existed for...street magicians and stage performers...could it? All the words were illegible...except for what appeared to be a link. He typed it into the computer and waited for the page to load. The screen was just loading up a strange image that resembled the one on the pamphlet when a sudden power outage shut the whole library down. The librarian tried to get things back up, but it seemed the source was external and thus, had to close up the place early. This brought Erik to his senses and he threw the paper away in the trash on his way out.
A few more months pass and Erik finds himself at the train station with all his possessions within the rucksack on his back and the roller suitcase at his side. His lease was up and he was finally taking the plunge. He had found a generic college the next state over and was taking the train there since it was cheapest. Orientation wouldn't be for another week, but he got permission to come earlier due to his circumstances. Now he was just waiting for the train to arrive. He thumbed through a novel while he waited, headphones drowning out the sound of people around him as he always did. When the time came and the train rolled up, the first thing Erik noticed was that the train was painted. From top to bottom, it looked like the night sky and even had white specks that resembled stars. He didn't want to get on at first, thinking it was the wrong train, then a voice blared from the train speaker the route number that was on his ticket. Shrugging, he got on and found a booth to have to himself. As the train left the station, he closed his eyes to rest as he had a long way to go.
Erik was woken up by the conductor, asking to see his ticket. He found it a bit strange, swearing that such a task was automated nowadays, but he didn't question it aloud as he pulled out the ticket stub he kept as it doubled as a receipt...only to be told that was for the normal train. He said it was the only ticket he had.
"Sir, if you didn't have a ticket, we wouldn't have stopped for you. The Starlight Express only stops at stations where holders of the Starlight Tickets reside."
Erik gave a slow blink, only to notice the conductor was staring at his rucksack. Turning, he saw something shining from one of the side pockets. Opening it up, he gasped as he saw the pamphlet he threw away months ago. At least, he thought it was. It was actually a ticket that had the same look about it. The conductor took it with a relieved smile and wished him well. As they walked away, Erik could have sworn he saw something like a tail poking out the jacket. He began to wonder if the food he ate that morning was bad, only for a strange flickering to come from the windows, as if they were passing through a tunnel. He looked out the window and gasped as he saw the impossible scenery of rainbow lights with strange interwoven webbing flying by. His mind raced as he tried to process it, only to close his eyes as bright sunlight suddenly appeared. Once Erik adjusted, he saw that the train was in the air now, heading towards a thick gathering of clouds. Passing through, there was a great space within and there was a floating island bearing a giant tree and what appeared to be a city on its own. The train was plunged into darkness as it passed into a tunnel beneath the island that then turned out to be a station.
Erik got off slowly, only to notice it was just him. He wondered where everyone else was, only to see the conductor had also debarked. He reached out to get their attention, only to watch them removed their coat and reveal themselves to be a cat! He stared in stunned silence.
"Hm? Oh, right. You're new here...and a week early. The other students aren't here yet, so allow me to welcome you." The conductor tilted his hat with a bow. "Welcome to Starlight City, home of Dawnlight Magic Academy and haven to all whom embrace magic! We have been waiting for you."
Erik is the first generation of new-bloods to be added to Starlight City. He'll be attending the academy which is a skill-based college. He has one year to harness his magic powers or risk expulsion and mind erasure to maintain the secret and safety of the hidden society. Naturally [you] are his dorm mate, but it's not your responsibility to help him. You were just randomly roomed with him.
Note: There's no 'villains' here really, just your typical school reality...but with magic! This is to be a simple jump back into an old-fashioned school theme, but with adult students and adult situations! For simplicity's sake, we're going to use the maps from Mana Khemia. And since it wasn't clearly stated, the train went through a portal that took him to a parallel Earth where magic has always existed.
5"4 - 55 kg
Likes: magic, fantasy books, animals, quiet places (day), physical training
Dislikes: actually fighting, wasteful spending, quiet places (night), historical anything, pointless conversations
Family relations: My parents are fine. They miss how I 'sparkled', but they understand. I want them to see this place, but I know they can't.
"I feel like I'm...too old to be learning magic. I'm not the same hopeful child that I was before, and yet...I want to try. To make it up to the old me, I'll learn all I can."
Likes: Reading, being alone, traveling, and listening to music
Dislikes:Crowds, meeting new people, not knowing the answers to questions, doing homework